There’s no doubt that motorcycle riding poses great risk of injury in the event of a motorcycle accident. If you were to pair riding with Murphy’s Law, you could truthfully say when things go awry while riding a motorcycle, you can expect the consequences to be the worst possible.
Motorcycle riders will always face a higher risk of injuries in an accident due to being more exposed to physical harm on the road. Even responsible riders are at risk of having an accident due to the negligence of those around them.
Most motorcyclists are aware of the motorcycle accident risks they face and take precautions to protect themselves on the road. At the same time, riders can’t refute the dangers involved with choosing a motorcycle for transportation as opposed to driving a car.
Motorcycle Accident Risk
According to NHTSA statistics for 2015, almost 5,000 riders lost their lives in motorcycle accidents in the United States alone. Approximately 33 percent of riders who were killed in 2015 died as a result of speeding, while 40 percent of those who died weren’t wearing a protective helmet. Riding under the influence of alcohol also contributed to the 2015 fatality rate.
Although many motorcycle accident risks can be avoided, some will be out of your control. There’s always the chance of facing bad weather, poor road conditions, or horrible drivers when traveling on the road. By keeping tabs on weather conditions and planning ahead, however, you can avoid riding in adverse weather that increases the risk of accidents. You should also plan when and where to stop on road trips to avoid riding fatigued.
Many motorcyclists feel safer when riding in numbers; group riding, however, has its downside when it comes to safety on the road. New riders could jeopardize their safety by attempting to keep up with skilled riders, despite their lack of experience. Group riders also tend to copy those around them when traveling together, even if they break road rules.
Whether you’re new to motorcycling riding or have developed some skill, it’s important to stay alert and ride safely, staying well within the range of your abilities and skills. This includes selecting a bike that you have the capacity to handle. Your motorcycle permit or license may qualify you for a large, powerful motorcycle, but if you cannot handle it safely due to lack of experience, you’ll only be putting yourself and others at greater risk of an accident on the road.
Protective Measures Against Motorcycle Accident Risks
By understanding the dangers involved in motorcycle riding, motorcyclists can take measures to protect themselves and minimize accidents on the road. Greater exposure, for example, increases a rider’s chances of sustaining severe injuries in the event of an accident. Without proper protection, accidents can result in broken bones, concussions, internal injuries, body burns, or death due to another’s negligence.
As motorcycles lack the basic safety features such as seat belts and airbags that vehicles provide, the risk of serious injuries in a crash will be significantly higher as compared to occupants of a car. Wearing protective motorcycle gear to include safety helmets, protective pants and jacket, boots, gloves, and elbow and knee guards could help minimize the extent of injuries received in an accident. At night, reflective gear will make riders more visible to other motorists and thereby avoid accidents.
Developing defensive riding skills is yet another way motorcyclists can protect themselves on the road. Proper training can help new riders get off to a good start. Even skilled riders can benefit from refresher training courses to hone their riding skills and enhance safety on the road. In addition to developing safe riding habits, riders need to be stay vigilant against bad drivers so as not to become a victim of their negligent driving habits.
Riders who do their part to ride defensively and tune into the actions of the motorists around them will be less vulnerable to accidents and injuries on the road.